Americans have the Constitutionally protected right to speak freely. But what if we began to self-monitor ourselves to not speak words that may be deemed unpopular, offensive, or politically incorrect? Pretty kewl, huh? Kinda like slaying the king in the womb before birth.
Over the past couple of weeks the sports world has been rocked by a secession of socially unpopular actions by some of its highest profile football athletes and Atlanta NBA co-owner and executive. Ray Rice, now former Baltimore Ravens running back, was caught on video punching and knocking out his then fiancée, now wife. He has since been released from his team and suspended indefinitely by the NFL. Current running back for the Minnesota Vikings Adrian Peterson has been indicted for child abuse for disciplining his son with a tree branch/switch. A co-owner of the NBA Atlanta Hawks Bruce Levenson is surrendering his half of team ownership due to the discovery of a 2-year-old memo regarding the demographics of the audience of the team at home games being largely Black-American and wanting to increase white attendance. He has apologized for his supposed “racist” comments. Also, a conversation by Hawks President Danny Ferry has come to light of him recanting a scouting report on prospective player Loul Deng. It referred to Deng as an African. Which he is by the way. He has since placed himself on “indefinite” leave and offered himself to those who benefit from racial strife and division.
None of these men have been convicted of a crime. Only Mr. Peterson has been indicted. But has yet had a jury seated for his day in court to actually determine if there has actually been a crime committed. But simply by a small, but loud, course of accusers they are being treated as though the have committed a felony.
First let me say that in the case of Ray Rice knocking out his then fiancée, or the physically injuring a woman by a man is truly repugnant to the highest degree. But, nor should women have a free rein to attack men without provocation with impunity. We don’t want to get to point where for a woman to ruin a man’s life is to simply accuse him of threatening or hitting her. What I believe to be the most repugnant issue in all of these instances is the severe lack of the allowance of a dissenting or opposite voice to be heard and the absence of a true aim for resolution.
Not that there hasn’t been voices dissenting from the popular course, but those aren’t the ones that are being reported and spoken of over, over, and over again. They do not fit the narrative that defames masculinity and manhood or further divides us on race and gender. I can remember when ESPN NFL Sunday Pregame had controversial conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh to do a segment. But, his comments regarding then Philadelphia Eagles QB Donovan McNabb prove too much. They wanted to stick football and sports. My, how things have changed. ESPN’s Pardon The Interruption Co-host Mike Wilbon comment on his radio show regarding the Adrian Peterson issue saying, “I think the decline in the behavior of America is directly traceable to the lack of whippings with switches,” During the times of the “Greatest Generation”, though they may not have been perfect, a good argument can be made that kids by them were more discipline do to the fact that the rod was not spared. I don’t remember reading about kids killing their parents, going off on mass killing sprees at schools, or such back in their time. Discipline and morality were better set in the home, by the parents.
Another ESPN popular commentator Steven A. Smith was suspended for his comments regarding Ray Rice then 2-game suspension when he said,“In Ray Rice’s case, he probably deserves more than a two- game suspension, which we both acknowledged,” Smith said on the show. “But at the same time, we also have to make sure that we learn as much as we can about elements of provocation.” You don’t think a jury would? Or someone truly interested in the facts, the truth, or coming up with a real solution?. Of course they would. If that was the objective. But then another ESPN commentator Michelle Beadle responded most vehemently stating, “Violence isn’t the victim’s issue,” she wrote. “It’s the abuser’s. To insinuate otherwise is irresponsible and disgusting.” Irresponsible? Disgusting? Really? One can not even question the context or circumstances of an event that can cost someone their livelihood and reputation? Would she feel the same if she were in Mr. Rice’s shoes? But regardless, Mr. Smith was the one who had to publicly recant his words of common sense to say, “I made what can only amount to the most egregious error of my career,” he said. “My words came across that it is somehow a woman’s fault. This was not my intent. It was not what I was trying to say. Yet the failure to clearly articulate something different lies squarely on my shoulders.” Dissension of thought squashed in the public square. We dare not look at the effect of the explosion of single-parent child births or the growth of gratuitous violence, or the socially destructive effects of the feminization of the male and the masculinization of the female, right? Nothing happens in a vacuum, without cause and effect. To think so would be irresponsible.
In the case of the Atlanta Hawks’ president and co-owner, Hall of Fame LA Lakers Kareem Abdul-Jabbar spoke in defence of Hawks president’s comments in saying, “Sure, there are assumptions he makes that are cringe-worthy — but the questions about how to attract more white fans were entirely reasonable. Well, the pitchforks are already sharpened and the torches lit anyway, so rather than let them go to waste why not drag another so-called racist before the Court of Public Opinion and see how much ratings-grabbing, head-shaking, race-shaming we can squeeze out of it. After all, the media got so much gleeful, hand-wringing mileage out of Don Sterling and Michael Brown. The only problem is that Atlanta Hawks controlling owner Bruce Levenson is no Donald Sterling. Nor is his email racist. In fact, his worst crime is misguided white guilt.” As for Mr. Ferry, he didn’t stick to the main fact as he said, “these were not my words…”. He was only reading from someone else’s report on Loul Deng. And even and investigation of some 24,000 prior Ferry emails by Atlanta law firm Alston and Bird uncovered no other similar remarks. Has anyone went to punish the author of the report? Put him on front street and call him a racist? Of course not. Why go after a guppy, when you have a whale on your hook. If the conversation was over how to increase black participation at a sporting event, or how a European player may fit for a team would this be an issue? What if a woman basketball star was the attacker against her male lover in a domestic violence issue, would that story be front page news?
There is a destructive agenda of political correctness and social reformation at work not just in the sports world today, but in the nation as a whole. It no longer matters what is actually the truth or legal, but what those shouting the loudest and has the largest media machine behind it say is truth. And the rest of us will be made to accept their truths. The legal and law process is not allowed to run its course, no true solution is sought, nor common sense allowed to be given air to breathe. Where a well orchestrated placement of liberally slanted point of views are thrust to the forefront to silence, marginalized, and or demonize any and all counter opinion or point of view in the court of public opinion. We are being divided into protected classes – the woman class, the black or ethnic class, the sexual orientation class, the age class, religious class, and so on. We are not allowed to view things as simply right or wrong. We have to first ask what class of citizen is involved. And in a climate where too many care about the failings and imperfections of a sports figure or institution than we do about that of a politician, makes this period in our nation more anxious. If we continue on this road we will fear to say anything or do anything that maybe seen by someone as unpopular, insensitive, or harsh. Dissension will be smothered in its incubator. And the mere accusation against a member of a protected class renders public defense of the accused mute and throws the life and liberties of the accused into jeopardy.
Edward R. Murrow prophetically said, “We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men – not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate, and to defend causes that were, for the moment, unpopular.”
I don’t know the guilt or innocence of Mr. Rice, Mr. Peterson, Mr. Ferry, or Mr. Levenson. No one does. But, what I do believe is if counseling or professional therapy , or even incarceration, is needed, than that should be offered. But only after a thorough and truthful investigation is executed, irregardless of the air of public opinion. To hear only one side of any dispute or argument can only end with an unjust and undeserving verdict. If we, due to a severe lack of factual information and thorough use of objectivity, clear thought, and reasoning, via manipulation of the presentation of the evidence, and only energized by hyped up, propagandized, and emotionally targeted stimuli inducement, prior to the true application of the law, then we are no better than a lynch mob. And a nation that is far less unified and free.
The lightening quick resignation/firing of newly hired Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich is only the latest disturbing sign of the Progressive Liberal’s publicly execution of anyone who dares to claim opposition to their point of view. What was the crime that meant that his head should be put on display to forewarn any others who dare to come down his path of free expression? He contributed $1000 to California Proposition 8, that dared to declare that marriage should be defined as between a man and a woman. Shut da front door!! Oh by the way, the measure passed overwhelming, and was only rejected by a grossly overreaching Federal Circuit Court declaring that the voices of the people does not matter regarding matters that it [the government] wants to promote.
But this is not the first time in history in which the government sought to silence descending or opposing points of view. Remember throughout Nazi Germany, with the SS Brown Shirts, and totalitarian/communist nations, such as China and North Korea, where friends, family members, and coworkers are literally turned into government informants, and the citizens are conditioned to self-sensor their actions and words so as not to appear out of step with the conformist population and suffer the wrath of the government. To the point that hardly anyone dares to speak publicly against the actions or motives of the government or whatever the current politically correct attitude is of the time. Even in the Bible, the story of King Nebuchadnezzar and Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, where the king mandated everyone bow down and willfully submit to his wishes and to be blindly worshiped, or violators would be cast in a burning furnace. When Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego openly refused his demands, they were arrested and thrown into the burning furnace for all others to take notice if they too dared disobey the kings demands or wishes.
History has shown us that one of the first things that a tyrant, or a government that seeks to rule of its citizens, is to suppress and or control speech and the flow of communication amongst the people. And the Founders of this great nation were all too conscious of such tragic episodes in history. So they placed the freedom of speech as the very first Amendment to the Constitution for the united States of America. Ironically, it was placed right along with restraining the government from interfering in the free exercise of a citizen’s religious. At the end of the day, the free expression of religion, particularly that of Christendom, is what all of this dust up is about. Just as in the Phil Robertson’s, of the A & E Duck Dynasty Reality TV show, brouhaha over his personal belief that marriage is defined in the Bible as being between a man and a woman. Period! We are supposed to be fruitful and multiply, i.e., to procreate according to the Bible. And though I’m not a biology whiz by any measure, two men nor two women can procreate. But since the end game is to fundamentally transform this nation into something that it was never designed to become, to detach it, and it’s people, from its Christian foundation, any semblance or representation of Christendom has to abolished from public view and of any relevance.
In order to carry out this grand deception, freedom of speech has to be contorted, suppressed, manipulated, and or extracted, except when it promotes the governments needs,and the truth to made into a lie. If the government says that a woman can correctly raise a child absent a man, than anyone else who says otherwise is now wrong. If the government says that the Negro people are inferior to Caucasians and should be made subservient to them, anyone who says otherwise is wrong. If the government says that Christendom should be detached from the lives of the citizenry for the sake of not “offending” someone, than anyone else who says otherwise is wrong. And if the government mandates that marriage shall now be defined openly to include those of the same sex, than anyone who does not bow to that way of thinking is now wrong. And the best way to infuse compliance throughout the population is a public lynching, execution, or burning in a furnace for the populace to be warned of the consequences of noncompliance. It does not matter of what political party’s affiliation that prescribes such policy. It only matter if such policy is designed to encourage more freedom, or less freedom.
Tyranny does not have to come via direct brute force, but by gentle coercion and the redefining of truth and right. Today truth and right is being redefined under the guise of “tolerance”. Particularly during the past 6 years or so, to publicly show favor of anything traditionally American, whether it be our language, our history, our flag, our laws, customs, values, or religious principles, has been redefined as being intolerable in defense of that of anothers. Conservative political commentator Erick Erickson truthfully stated, “Evil Preaches Tolerance Until It Is Dominant, Then Seeks to Silence Good.”
True freedom is defined, “The quality or state of being free: as the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action.” The Founders knew all too well the crucial importance of the people being able to speak freely amongst each other, to be able to disseminate information without fear of government reprisals, manipulation, coercion, or intimidation. That is why a free and unadulterated press was also placed in the first Amendment.
If we began to self-censor what we say or how we communicate to each other to the point that we only publicly display actions or say things simply because its what others want to see or hear, it stifles freedom and opens the way for government to come off its leash. 1700’s French author and writer, Voltaire, famously said, “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.” The freedom of speech does not shield you from being offended or having bad things said to you. I remember back in the day, there was a saying, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, words will never hurt me.” As an individual though I may not like what you say or do, or the manner by which chose to act, I can not stop you by force for speaking nor acting in any way. But, the government can, whether it be directly, via standing near you with his hand on his gun, or indirectly, via public policy enactments, laws, or decrees. So long as one is not infringing upon another’s right to his of her life, liberty, or property/pursuit of happiness, it should not manner. We have gotten to a disturbing point in this country that we a self-censoring our thoughts so as not to commit a crime. Founder Ben Franklin so warned us, “Without freedom of thought there can be no such thing as wisdom; and no such thing as public liberty without freedom of speech.”
The choice is ours.